Aguri hopeful of Ide improvement
|By Jonathan Noble||Sunday, April 9th 2006, 08:31 GMT|
Super Aguri are hoping that a test at Barcelona in Spain this week will allow Yuji Ide to start showing some of his potential, as the team hint they may have to take action if the Japanese rookie does not start improving his form soon.
Although Ide looked pretty solid on his debut in Bahrain, he encountered a more difficult Malaysian Grand Prix before struggling at Melbourne last weekend, where he spun a number of times in qualifying.
Ide's performance has already led to speculation that the team may be looking for a replacement, but Aguri's managing director Daniel Audetto has made it clear that he hopes the Japanese driver will make progress at Barcelona to resolve the team's concerns.
"Ide was really struggling in Melbourne because it was dirty, bumpy and windy," said Audetto. "To be honest with you, we are lucky he did not crash the car yet.
"We will give him a full test in Barcelona before Imola and then we can assess him with more time and also fairness, to give him a good chance to prove that he is good.
"Bahrain was not that bad, Malaysia was another difficult circuit, hot and humid, and Australia was particularly difficult. San Marino will be tough too, but giving him a full day in Barcelona I think we should see the potential in full at Imola.
"Otherwise, we will have to take consequences because we cannot have a driver who is two seconds a lap slower (than his teammate)."
Ide himself admitted in Australia that he was not driving at the standards of his rivals following his difficult weekend.
"I am far from being competitive compared to the other drivers, so I want to improve my driving skills and learn the next circuit as quickly as possible," Ide explained.
Aguri appear committed to running an all-Japanese driver line-up and rumours have suggested that former Formula Nippon champion Satoshi Motoyama could replace Ide if the team choose to take action.
Motoyama is no stranger to Formula One machinery, having driven on the Friday at the 2003 Japanese Grand Prix for Jordan.